If Kevin Na drives you nuts with his, shall we say, “meticulous,” pre-shot routine, the 36-hole co-leader of The Players Championship wants you to know he’s sorry.
After Na waggled a bit and then some more, and then backed off his shot on the 18th tee, Golf Channel’s Kelly Tilghman asked him to explain his approach. Na took the opportunity to spill his guts about the demons inside his head.
“I’m having a hard time keeping with my pre-shot routine,” he said. “There’s no many thoughts going in my mind, changing my golf swing, and I change my set-up and I just don’t feel comfortable.”
We’ll let Na tell you in his own words what happens when he steps over the ball:
“It’s usually little waggles, two half-swings, and then I hit it, but sometimes I can’t do it, I’ll do it again, four, five, six, and sometimes I scream at myself, ‘pull the trigger,’ and it’s more frustrating for me. I’m sure people that are watching it are, like, ‘ah, he just keeps waggling, Sergio, what Sergio used to do.’
“I keep telling myself, ‘pull the trigger, pull the trigger,’ and sometimes I just can’t and the fellow competitors I play with, they know it and I tell them, ‘look guys, I’m trying,’ and the guys have been really good sports about it and I’m trying to play faster.”
Na said he was so concerned about the time it takes him to commit to a shot that he called a rules official over at some point during his second round.
“I wasn’t quite sure where the group in front was,” Na said. “I said, ‘how are we doing on time? He said, 'you guys are fine,' so I’m always trying.”
Tilghman thanked Na for his gut-wrenching honesty. What more can you say?